Peace Corps To Host Second Conference on International Volunteerism ; Harris Wofford, early architect of Peace Corps, is keynote speaker June 22
June 17, 1998Washington, D.C., June 17, 1998—The Peace Corps will host a week-long conference on international volunteerism next week at the Peace Corps headquarters, featuring participants from 22 countries representing the leading volunteer development agencies around the world. The conference will open at 9 a.m. on Monday, June 22, with a keynote address by Harris Wofford, former U.S. Senator and current CEO of the Corporation for National Service. Wofford was an early architect of the Peace Corps, helping Sargent Shriver plan and organize the agency during the Kennedy administration. He then was named country director in Ethiopia and later became associate director of the Peace Corps in the Johnson administration. This year's event is a follow-up to a conference the Peace Corps hosted in 1996. Participants will explore ways in which they can collaborate in the field and jointly promote international volunteerism. Leaders of national service volunteer organizations from 12 countries will visit seven Washington area work sites of similar organizations on Tuesday, June 23.
WHO:Peace Corps Director Mark Gearan and 27 leaders of volunteer development agencies (see attached list)
WHAT: Conference on International Volunteerism
WHEN:Monday, June 22 to Friday, June 26
WHERE: Peace Corps Headquarters 1990 K St., N.W., Washington, D.C.
Many of the organizations represented at the conference were inspired by and formed shortly after the Peace Corps, which was created by President John F. Kennedy on March 1, 1961. Since then, more than 150,000 Americans have joined the Peace Corps, serving in 132 countries. Currently, about 6,500 Peace Corps volunteers are working in 81 countries to help fight hunger, bring clean water to communities, teach children, protect the environment, help start new small businesses and prevent the spread of AIDS.
Note: Peace Corps Director Mark Gearan and other participants are available for interviews on next week. Please call the Peace Corps press office at (202) 606-3010 to arrange an appointment.